The importance of putter face aim

Puttlab putter face aim
With the help of the SAM Puttlab at the PGACLP we can accurately measure putter face aim. In fact it is 1 of 28 variables that we can measure (we can also measure path, face rotation, rise angle, timing etc). On its own an improvement in aim can have a significant effect on your performance on the greens. Improved aim facilitates improved confidence on the greens, knowing that if you hit the putt with the correct speed it has a good chance of going in. Generally speaking, golfers with good and consistent aim have better stroke mechanics as the need for compensatory movements is reduced. In combination with programs like Aimpoint, private lessons and putter fitting, the results from improving aim can be substantial.

Let’s take a look at some of the reasons why a golfers’ putter face aim could be an issue:

1. Poor green reading

green reading and aimA recent article on indicated that even tour professionals can attribute 40% of their errors on the green to green reading. This means that for the club level golfer the number of green reading errors is probably much higher and having a significant effect on their putting performance. Studies from golf researcher Dave Pelz in the 70’s and 80’s showed that the average player under-read putts by 65% and they couldn’t aim their putter correctly relative to their aim anyway. The research suggested that most average players would be better just hitting putts without long green reading processes and aiming.

2. Poor vision or target awareness

In 1996, Nick Faldo had a remarkable turn around in his putting performance due to improved vision. This was achieved without any surgery, just improved awareness of his deficiencies and some specific drills. Golf is made more difficult due to players needing to aim their putter with their head/eyes side on to the hole in monocular vision versus the binocular vision we use in normal life. A golfers vision can improve can improve with awareness of their particular issue and some specific drills.

3. Incongruent putter head design

This is related to vision as discussed earlier. Most golfers will tend to aim a certain head design better than another. For example, some may aim an “Anser” style plumber neck putter better than a “two ball style putter.” This has to do with the neck and head design as well as the graphics and sight lines on the putter. The head design needs to match the vision of the golfer but also match the stroke mechanics of the player.

Key takeaways

Regardless of the direction of the aim, one of the most important things is the consistency of the aim. If you are aiming 3 degrees right of the target every time you can make a consistent manipulation to roll the ball on your chosen line and obtain a good level of performance.

It is important to understand that on a 10 foot putt, a 1 degree error in face aim means you are aiming outside of the hole. You can easily see that an aiming error of 2+ degrees means that quite significant manipulation is required even on short putts.

The PGACLP uses the SAM Puttlab system for putter fitting and stroke testing. If you would like to read more about our putting studio click here.

To improve your putting performance and lower your scores use the booking form or phone 8320 1902

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